The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

It’s Congress Who’s Sick

Jan 30, 2006

Congress is about to pass a law that will cut off many Medicaid-eligible people from the program.

Part of the budget bill up for a vote on February 1, the provision would require Medicaid applicants to show a passport or birth certificate when they apply. There are NO exceptions.

Lawmakers rationalize the move by saying it’s necessary to stop non-citizens from applying for and receiving Medicaid coverage.

There’s only one problem with that: there’s absolutely NO evidence there are any false applications even occurring!

In other words, the administrative costs of the new rule would far outstrip any cost savings from such a change. And yet, the Congressional Budget Office says that the new rule would save more than 700 million dollars in the next ten years.

How can that be? Simple. They KNOW that the majority of people on Medicaid have no passport and no copy of a birth certificate, and would have a difficult time getting one. They KNOW that a huge number of people who are eligible will be denied Medicaid if the rules goes into effect!

Medicaid was supposed to cover the medical care for the very poor. But over and over again, Congress has looked for excuses to exclude more poor from the program. First they barred many immigrants from Medicaid coverage–under the pretext that these immigrants were not fully documented. Then they cut off all immigrants–“legal” or not–under the pretext that they were not citizens. And now they are going after any citizen who doesn’t have all the necessary paper work.

This is a slick maneuver to steal medical care from poor people.

How sick is that!